A Statement on Hampshire College, June 2019

The Colleges That Change Lives Board of Directors has been carefully monitoring the conversation at Hampshire College and their drive to restructure to a more sustainable business model. Today the institution provided an update from the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), Hampshire’s accrediting body.

NECHE and Hampshire jointly announced that the Commission has decided to issue the College a public Notation while deferring a formal judgement on accreditation status until November, 2019. Hampshire remains fully accredited and dedicated to their students and the future of the College and is on an accelerated search to identify a new president who will help secure their governance, operations, and finances; advance a major fundraising campaign; and renew their academic program and enrollment.

The Commission’s “Notation” is intended to notify the public that NECHE continues to be concerned that Hampshire is in danger of not meeting its accreditation standards and that, if current conditions continue or worsen, accreditation may be withdrawn. The Commission also recognizes that Hampshire is in a period of unprecedented transition, and much is not yet known. They therefore deferred making a formal judgment pending the College’s demonstrated success in securing its governance, leadership, and operations, and planning for its long-term sustainability.

The text of the Commission’s press release issued today is online. Hampshire will report again to NECHE on November 1.

Hampshire will welcome first-year students in the fall and plans to enroll a class for the fall of 2020. Hampshire College was a founding member of the non-profit, Colleges That Change Lives, and we hope to continue our long relationship.

These are challenging times in higher education, especially for small, liberal arts colleges. The CTCL Board and leaders of our 45-member institutions firmly believe in the value of the transformative education offered at CTCL-member schools—one that develops graduates who will take us into the future with thoughtful, careful leadership.

Please contact us if you have more questions. The Board offers our support to the entire Hampshire community during this time of transition and wishes them great success in achieving these bold goals.

Christine D. Bowman
Chair, Colleges That Change Lives Board of Directors
Dean of Admission and Enrollment Services, Southwestern University

Maria Furtado
Executive Director, Colleges That Change Lives